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The plaque on the outside wall of Beethovenhaus. Unfortunately taking photographs inside the building was not allowed!

The festival has gone well, and today is our last concert, the 8th and 9th symphonies of Beethoven. The audience here has been really fantastic and they really love maestro Masur. The orchestra has played great as well!

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Maestro Masur at the courtyard of Beethovenhouse, exchanging thoughts with the Master...

This morning I made a visit to the Beethovenhaus on the Bonngasse. It is the house where Ludwig van Beethoven was born, and it was saved from demolition by a group of citizens of Bonn who bought the property and transformed it into a museum.

Today there is not only the museum but also a chamber music hall and Beethoven-archives of Bonn.

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The attic room where Beethoven was born - on the outside

The museum was full of interesting things: Manuscript pages, early editions, letters, notebooks, sketches, leaves from Beethoven's conversation books etc. His viola was there on display as well (he earned a living as a viola player in Bonn opera before moving to Vienna at age of 22), as well as other instruments owned by him.

Most emotional sight was the room where the great man was born. It was a tiny attic room. Next to it was the death mask of Beethoven as well as another plaster cast of his face at age of approximately forty. There was the beginning, the maturity, and the end all in the same spot. It made me think how we all have a humble beginning, but what great potential there is in every child!

UPDATE 14.10.2008: More photos from the festival below!

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Before the final concert with my colleague Carlos Dourthe

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The ONF in concert with Maestro Masur

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In the same concert Kurt Masur was awarded the "Furtwänglerpreis"

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The Choir of Radio France before the 9th symphony

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After the performance, soprano Melanie Diener, alto Carolin Masur, tenor Christian Elsner, baritone Hanno Müller-Brachmann and the chorus master Matthias Brauer